The Piro Lito Lab

Our group studies the properties of oncoproteins that drive cancer cell growth, focusing on lung cancer and other solid tumors. We are interested in understanding how these are activated, their regulatory mechanisms, and how they modulate the behavior of cancer cells. To answer these questions we utilize small molecule inhibitors coupled with biochemical and genetic approaches in patient-derived cell line or xenograft model systems. We aim to provide insight into the fundamental processes that govern tumor biology and to identify therapeutic interventions that will prolong survival and improve the quality of life in patients with cancer. 

Piro Lito, MD, PhD

Piro Lito, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Research Focus

Physician-scientist Piro Lito studies oncoproteins that drive cancer cell growth.


MD,PhD, Michigan State University

Lab Members

  • Xue JY, Zhao Y, Aronowitz J, Mai TT, Vides A, Qeriqi B, Kim D, Li C, de Stanchina E, Mazutis L, Risso D, Lito P. Rapid non-uniform adaptation to conformation-specific KRAS(G12C) inhibition. Nature. 2020;577(7790):421-5. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1884-x. PMID: 31915379
  • Xue Y, Martelotto L, Baslan T, Vides A, Solomon M, Mai TT, Chaudhary N, Riely GJ, Li BT, Scott K, Cechhi F, Stierner U, Chadalavada K, de Stanchina E, Schwartz S, Hembrough T, Nanjangud G, Berger MF, Nilsson J, Lowe SW, Reis-Filho JS, Rosen N, Lito P. An approach to suppress the evolution of resistance in BRAF(V600E)-mutant cancer. Nature Medicine. 2017;23(8):929-37. doi: 10.1038/nm.4369. PMID: 28714990
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Selected Achievements
  • Damon Runyon Clinical Investigator (2017)
  • The V Foundation for Cancer Research, Translational Research Award (2015)
  • LUNGevity Foundation, Career Development Award (2015)
  • NIH K08, Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (2015)
  • Stand up to Cancer Lung Cancer Dream Team, Young Investigator (2015)
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  • Conquer Cancer Foundation, Young Investigator Award (2013)
  • Charles A. Dana Fellow/Clinical Scholar in Biomedical Research (2011)